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How to remove baby formula stains from just about anything

by Karen B. Gibbs / / Source: TODAY

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What could be more peaceful than feeding your baby? Giving them a bottle, feeling their rhythmic breathing, listening to the slurps and sighs … and then finding a ring of baby formula on your new blouse, or even worse, spit-up on the couch or carpet! So relaxing, right?

Cherish the moment and forget the stain! Just follow this great advice from our trio of cleaning experts.

How to remove baby formula stains...

... from clothing

Note: Silk or wool should be professionally cleaned.

As a cleaning expert, Dan Miller, founder/CEO of Mulberry’s Garment Care, wants you to understand the reasoning behind his cleaning tips. “Most baby formulas consist primarily of milk, so their stains are animal-based,” explained Miller. “Such stains can be removed with alkaline solutions like laundry detergent, dish-washing detergent or ammonia.”

  1. Begin by flushing cold water through the back of the stain.
  2. Place a tablespoon of dish or laundry detergent or ammonia onto a wet white cloth.
  3. Gently rub this into the stain.
  4. Wait five minutes, then flush the back of the stain once again with cold water.
  5. If the stain remains, spray it with an enzyme stain remover. Animal-based stains are removed by the enzyme protease, Miller said, so make sure your stain remover has protease. (Zout and 7th Generation do.)
  6. Follow package directions regarding how long to let the cleaner work before washing, then wash in hot water. Repeat as needed.

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... from upholstery

Cleaning coach Leslie Reichert recommends using dish-washing detergent to remove these stains from upholstery.

  1. Mix one tablespoon of dish-washing detergent with two cups of cool water.
  2. Using clean white cloths, alternately dab the stain with the detergent solution and a dry cloth.
  3. Repeat until the stain disappears.
  4. Rinse detergent residue from fabric by dabbing it with a clean, wet cloth.
  5. Blot to dry.

... from carpet

Chem-Dry cleaning director of training, Jotham Hatch, offers this advice for removing baby formula from carpet.

“Baby formula rarely leaves a stain and when cleaned up quickly with water, will almost always come up,” said Hatch. “It's important to not let the spot sit, however, because this can result in an unsightly stain that could turn your carpet yellow."

  1. Blot the stain with warm water and a clean towel, rinsing out the towel frequently. Do not rub the area or you’ll drive the stain in deeper.
  2. Finishing by blotting with a clean, dry cloth until the stain seems to have disappeared.
  3. If the stain persists, add a very small amount of dish soap to the water and continue blotting as above.
  4. 4. If the stain is still there after using both methods, contact a professional carpet cleaning service, preferably one that is environmentally friendly, adds Hatch.

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